Miscues Help Angels Edge Cubs at Fitch Park
Taking advantage of two costly Cub errors, the Angels rallied for three runs in the top of the 8th and edged the Cubs 4-3 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.
While the Cubs were playing the Angels on Field #3, Brian Smith, Su-Min Jung, Amaury Paulino, and Ryan Hartman worked in a four inning “sim” game on Field #1, facing a lineup of Cubs position players who were not in the game on Field #3.
The four pitchers who threw in the “sim” game have been struggling with their control, and are being held out of EXST games until they can demonstrate that they can throw strikes more consistently. If they are unable to do that, a couple of them (Jung and Hartman) could get released before the end of Extended Spring Training.
Here is the abridged box score from the EXST game on Field #3 (Cubs players only):
1. Shawon Dunston Jr, CF: 1-4 (K, 3B, 3-1, 3-U, R, RBI)
2. Gioskar Amaya, 2B: 0-2 (K, F-9 SF, P-4, BB, RBI)
3. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 0-3 (BB, 3-U, 3-U, F-9)
4a. Xavier Batista, LF: 1-2 (K, BB, 1B, R)
4b. Trevor Gretzky, LF: 0-1 (K)
5. Dan Vogelbach, 1B: 0-2 (K, K, BB)
6. Anthony Giansanti, C: 0-3 (5-3, F-9, F-8)
7. Yasiel Balaguert, RF: 1-3 (1B, 6-3, 5-3, RBI)
8a. Eduardo Gonzalez, DH #1: 0-1 (F-7, BB)
8b. Dong-Yub Kim, PH: 0-1 (F-8)
9. Neftali Rosario, DH #2: 0-2 (P-3, 5-4-3 DP, BB)
10a. Carlos Penalver, SS: 1-2 (1B, K, R, SB)
10b. Danny Lockhart, SS: 0-1 (6-4-3 DP)
1. Tayler Scott: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 1 GIDP, 41 pitches (23 strikes), 5/2 GO/FO
2. Hunter Ackerman: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 WP, 29 pitches (17 strikes), 2/2 GO/FO
3. Javier Castro: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 28 pitches (15 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
4. Augusto Colina: 0.2 IP, 2 H, 3 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 23 pitches (15 strikes)
5. Roderik Pichardo: 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 14 pitches (8 strikes), 2/3 GO/FO
CUBS ERRORS: 2
1. SS Danny Lockhart - E-6 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base – eventually scored unearned run)
2. SS Danny Lockhart - E-6 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely and unearned run to score)
CUBS OUTFIELD ASSISTS:
LF Xavier Batista threw out batter 7-4 trying to stretch a single into a double
WEATHER: Mostly sunny and a bit breezy with temperatures in the 80’s
2nd in defensive WAR, NL.
6th in NL in RBI
Go complain about something else, like, "they never play good against the good teams", or some other shit.
Addy really has trouble breaking through .250 BA -- after his hot streak got him to .251, he has gone 1-for-17.
Thank goodness for Jansen's 2 WP on Friday -- otherwise this would have been a sweep.
There seems to be a direct correlation with overconfidence in the Cubs offense against mediocre/young pitchers and really poor offense against mediocre/young pitchers. So, let's fear the Pirate pitchers!
Rizzo due for a power surge -- one HR in August so far. He truly does hit them in bunches.
Sometimes I'm not as supportive of Cahill as maybe I should be. There, I said it.
Rough 8th inning all around -- HBP, Cahill error, Javy's poor decision.
Oh well - given that the Cubs didn't look like they were going to score, it's better to lose in 9 innings, save the bullpen and get changed for the PJ trip home.
Baez still learning
heyward with his 3rd multi-hit game since the all-star break (all in august)...2nd in the past 3 games during his 7 game hitting streak.
he's gone from flirting with a sub-.300 ob% to nearing .310 ob% in 3 games (1 game was just a 1 for 1 pinch hit appearance). all 5 hits in the past 3 games have come in a row...neat.
stewart with 7Ks through 3ip...of course.
that 10-13 mph difference in his fastball/change is working today...and they're swinging at his crappy slider.
brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.
Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.
video of Maddon.
always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.
#Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs
Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.
Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.
Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.
I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.